This past week has been challenging in many ways. I had minor surgery - a cyst removed from my neck- and had been battling a sinus infection. Xander caught an upper respiratory infection and double ear infection, his second in the past couple months, which brought us to after hours at his pediatrician (my brain can't help but mentally add up all the health care costs associated with this poor little guy so far this year who seems to be battling one cold or ear infection after another.) Unfortunately, because of his illness, he was forced to miss our annual Easter Egg hunt with my first playgroup that I've been with since Rosemary only 2 months old. Fortunately, it ended up giving Rosemary and I a perfect excuse to have a day celebrating just the two of us! Also, since it's really what I consider "her" playgroup (I'm in two) it was nice just having her with me to spend the morning with her little friends. I didn't get any pictures of the actual egg hunt (another technological disaster occured- I dropped my phone and cracked the screen so I am limited in the use of it until it gets repaired) but she loved it. She also experienced her first tummy ache from too much candy! She just couldn't resist tearing into the chocolate candies hidden inside her Easter eggs, and for the first time, I just let her. Every kid deserves to experience a sugar coma once in her life and I'm pretty sure she won't do it again :)
I surprised her after the Easter egg hunt and took her to the zoo! We started on the roller coaster (again, no picture) and then found some lunch. She wanted a corn dog, and all they had were footlongs. Would you believe she ate the WHOLE thing? She did. I'm not kidding. You should see this girl eat. When she likes something, there's no stopping her. I was able to get a few pictures of our day with my pitiful phone and here's one I couldn't resist!
As we were eating lunch, the clouds started moving in and the rain started. We found a little shelter and hid under there for a while, allowing Rosemary to take her time and finish up for footlong corn dog and tear into a bag of chips :) [A note about her shoes: The silver flip flops she wore to the zoo fell apart as we were walking in so the first thing we did was hit up the zoo gift shop looking for a new pair. We ended up finding a pair that fit her. But they weren't her usual size. In fact, they weren't in the usual section. She wears some where between a 10.5 and 12 T. These are a size 1. No "T." It broke my heart a little that I had to buy her shoes from the big kid section.]
I took this time to snap a picture of the two of us, just to document our special day together.
After the rain stopped, we headed over to feed some fish, see the horses, feed some goats, explore the petting zoo, and then headed over to visit the Florida habitat where we saw a panther and the highlight of our day, the manatees! Rosemary loved the manatees and asked me to read the sign to her repeatedly. I noticed a gift shop nearby so we headed in there and I bought her a book about manatees to bring home. I love nourishing these curiosities she has and don't mind spoiling her mind and am thankful it was a book she wanted and not the giant stuffed manatee that we have no room for :) We've been to the zoo many times so we didn't rush around to see all the animals. After visiting the manatees, we slowed down and road the carousel. She found a manatee to ride on :)
Then we headed to the fountains for some splash time before heading home.
Though we hadn't planned this day far in advance, it was so special. The last time we had a special day like this was when I took her to the tea room and that was a long time ago. I noticed this week that she is growing more and more into a little lady and our relationship is changing. She is becoming more independent. I started to miss her. There were a couple days this week when she started feeling a little under the weather, though it didn't progress into anything like what Xander has. She was just run down enough to be extra cuddly. There was one morning this past week where the two of us just cuddled on the couch after breakfast. I played with her hair, kissed her cheeks, and just absorbed her. I miss having those tender moments. While I am sad that Xander is sick, I am thankful that it allowed Rosemary and I to have a day just the two of us. We need to make a conscious effort to do this more often. Both of us benefited from it. She is a delightful little person. She's smart (she asks such good questions and makes connections that are far beyond what I would expect out of a four year old), witty (she definitely has a sarcastic wit about her), funny (she cracks silly jokes about the most random things), caring (she mentioned things Xander would like at the zoo several times), and gorgeous. I wish I had Joe's camera skills so I could have shown off how amazing she is. She's not my baby anymore. She's this perfect little person. I'm beginning to see some positive things coming out of her headstrongness. While still challenging, I am seeing it is her way of learning about and interacting with the world. She takes power when she needs it. I admire her. I can't wait for our next mommy/daughter date.